Morningside’s volleyball team made its most successful national tournament showing in school history while posting a 20-14 record in the 2017 campaign.
Morningside College posted a 20-14 record in the 2017 volleyball season for its second straight 20-win campaign following a 20-15 finish in 2016. The Mustangs were ranked 16th in the nation in the NAIA Post-Season Top 25 poll, made a second consecutive appearance in the NAIA Volleyball National Championship and finished fifth in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) standings with a 10-6 league mark.
Morningside had its best ever showing at the NAIA Volleyball National Championship when it went 2-1 in pool play to advance to the 16-team single-elimination bracket for the first time in school history. Morningside swept Columbia College 3-0, lost 3-1 against Grand View University and swept Tabor College 3-0 in national tournament pool play before it suffered a 3-0 loss against Park University in the single-elimination bracket.
The Mustangs have a 237-143 record for a .624 winning percentage over the last 11 seasons and have made six NAIA National Tournament appearances over the last 10 years.
Bergmann Leads Mustangs’ Attack
Jayde Bergmann, a 5-10 senior outside hitter from Dakota Dunes, S.D., led the Mustangs’ attack with 292 kills and ranked second on the team with an average of 2.43 kills per set. She had the Mustangs’ top individual kill performance of the season with 19 kills in a 3-1 victory against Dakota State University on Sept. 15.
Bergmann had all three of the Mustangs kill/dig double doubles this season with 14 kills and 10 digs in a 3-1 victory against Bellevue University, 16 kills and 18 digs in a 3-1 win against Briar Cliff University and 10 kills and 10 digs in a 3-0 sweep of Dakota Wesleyan University.
Buyert Reaches 1000 Career Kills
Jenn Buyert, a 6-3 senior outside hitter from Sioux Center, Iowa, slammed 284 kills to push her career total to 1005 kills for the 15th highest total in Morningside history.
She had a team-high 14 double figure kill performances this season and led the Mustangs with an average of 2.58 kills per set.
Aside from her attacking exploits, Buyert amassed 282 career block assists for the seventh highest total in Morningside history.
Nikki Oberfoell, a 5-6 senior defensive specialist from Brighton, Colo., led the Mustangs with 606 digs for an average of 4.97 digs per set for the sixth highest single-season dig total and fourth highest single-season dig average in Morningside history. Oberfoell produced a double figure dig performance in 31 of the Mustangs’ 34 matches and had the team’s top individual total of the season with 31 digs in the Mustangs’ 3-2 victory against city rival Briar Cliff University on Sept. 19. She had 26 digs when the Mustangs swept Dakota Wesleyan 3-0 on Sept. 27 for the fifth highest three-set dig total in Morningside history.
Oberfoell, who joined the Mustangs in 2016 as a transfer from Iowa Central Community College, amassed 1141 digs in just two seasons at Morningside to rank 13th on the college’s all-time career dig list and her career average of 4.41 digs per set is the third highest rate in Morningside history.
Gourley Reaches 1000-Dig Milestone
Morgan Gourley, a 5-4 senior defensive specialist from Stanhope, Iowa, came up with 279 digs for an average of 2.29 digs per set during the 2017 season to reach the 1000-career dig milestone. Gourley finished her career with 1049 digs for the 18th highest total in Morningside history.
Alberico Leads Mustangs In Assists And Ace Serves
Callie Alberico, a 5-9 sophomore setter from Fort Calhoun, Neb., topped the Mustangs with 1003 assists for an average of 8.72 assists per set, led the team with 27 ace serves and ranked second with 291 digs for an average of 2.53 digs per set. She had the Mustangs’ top ace serve performance of the season with four aces in a 3-1 victory against Dakota State University on Sept. 15.
Alberico, who dealt a season’s high 53 assists in the Mustangs’ 3-2 victory against city rival Briar Cliff on Sept. 19, moved into eighth place in the Morningside record book with 1672 career assists.
Brittni Olson, a 6-1 sophomore middle blocker from Sioux City, was the Mustangs’ top defensive presence at the net with team-high totals of 15 solo blocks and 109 block assists for an average of 1.02 blocks per set. Olson was also one of the Mustangs’ most effective offensive players at the net with 248 kills for an average of 2.03 kills per set and a team-high .303 hitting percentage.
Olson already ranks 10th in the Morningside record book with 255 career block assists after her first two seasons and is on pace to break the school record of 382 career block assists established by Jill Jackes from 1990-94.
Vande Stouwe Climbs Career Chart
Ashley Vande Stouwe, a 6-1 senior middle blocker from Rock Rapids, Iowa, had 49 block assists this season to raise her career total to 259 block assists for the ninth highest total in Morningside history.